QuickBooks Online

For Small Business Owners

QuickBooks Online (QBO) has grown by leaps and bounds since they launched in 2004. In October 2013, QuickBooks released a new redesigned version of QBO.  

QuickBooks Online Review

I admit I wasn’t a big fan of the new version when it first came out.

I took it for a test drive over years ago and could not find anything in the online version that would justify a monthly cost when I already had the desktop version and it was working moderately well for me.

But last year I decided to do the free trial again and see if they had improved since the last time I had tried it.

I was pleasantly surprised to see they have improved…a lot! One of the main reason why I decided to give the online version another try is because I heard the bank and credit card integration worked better in the online version. It does!

And… it has a PayPal bank feed as well! Most of my online business is handled through PayPal and entering all my sales and fees from PayPal to the desktop QuickBooks was a dreaded chore each month.


The PayPal bank feed in QBO does not work very well for me. It keeps losing connection and does not import the PayPal fees.


Now they have an app that is working very well for me!

It is called Sync with PayPal.

It automatically imports all your PayPal sales transactions, fees, taxes, discounts, and tips, into QuickBooks Online.

This app will also import up to eighteen months’ worth of transactions when you first set it up.

If you already have a PayPal bank feed set up you will need to disconnect it first before the "sync". Go to Transactions > Banking, click the PayPal card, click the pencil icon, click Edit account info, select the checkbox “Disconnect this account on save,” and click Save.

Also while you are going thru the process of setting up the app, there will be an option to let them match up your income and expense accounts or go in and match them up yourself. I recommend you manually do the match up. I think it says something about Advanced User Settings. It is easy to do.

There is some negative reviews about this app (click on the Review tab), but for my simple business needs it is working very well! See more about this time saver app: Sync with PayPal

Those automatic imports have whittled down my bookkeeping time from 5 to 6 hours to 30 minutes. It also made a dreaded task that I would put off and do grudgingly once a month to a quick easy chore I now do weekly in just a few minutes.

It was a bit of a learning curve going from the desktop version to the QuickBooks Online version. Almost everything is different! But they did make it overall user-friendly and the video tutorials that pop up when you setup QBO is pretty helpful for learning the basics.

What I like about QuickBooks Online now:

  • Bank and credit card integration
  • PayPal integration (will pull in sales and expenses EXCEPT for the PayPal fees...but they have an app for that now! See FYI box above)
  • Easy setup (My desktop QuickBooks file imported automatically and smoothly into QBO)
  • The interface is truly easy to maneuver…once you learn where everything is at :)
  • Video tutorials are available in the software and the Intuit Academy.
  • The quick access button at the top is handy to get to commonly used tasks such as Deposits (Make Deposit window in Desktop) and Checks (Write Check window in Desktop)
  • The sidebar lets you click on options such as Transactions that will then expand to commonly used options such as Banking, Sales, Expenses, and the Chart of Accounts
  • The gear at the top right side drops down to quick access to company settings, lists, and tools.
  • Each account in the Chart of Accounts is easy to edit or delete or even run a quick report on by clicking on a little dropdown arrow at the end of the row.
  • Expenses and Income are conveniently displayed on the dashboard. The Profit and Loss section includes dropdown arrow that include options to display income and expenses at a glance for last 30 days, this month, this quarter, this year, last month, last quarter, or last year.

What I still don’t like:

  • Cannot customize the dashboard (as far as I know) There are sections there I do not use and would like to remove.
  • I have not had to call QBO support but complaints abundantly abound regarding QuickBooks long wait times and not so knowledgeable reps.

I have been using QuickBooks Online for about a year and so far what I like far outweighs what I don’t. I will continue to add to my above lists as I find out more things I can and cannot do with this accounting software.

My overall impression with QBO is that it is a good accounting solution for small business like mine…especially with the PayPal Sync App. If you find yourself dreading and putting off your bookkeeping duties because of your current cumbersome accounting software, you might want to try QuickBooks Online 30 day free trial and take it for a spin.

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